Many people, most notably those residing in remote areas choose to use solar power systems that are completely self-sufficient. Systems that are designed to provide all energy needs at all times. In contrast other people favor enjoying the advantages of solar power while still remaining on the utility grid.
With inverters that produce pure sine waves as part of the solar power system, the system may be attached to a utility grid most of the time. This lets consumers have the backup for utility power as opposed to using storage batteries.
Connecting to a utility grid helps those utility customers who don’t wish to have a big solar system on their homes. It also helps in situations where there just isn’t sufficient sunlight to give enough power every day.
Several benefits are gained from being part of a utility grid. One involves net metering. This program is widely offered. It lets utility customers with solar power systems see profits resulting from excess energy output.
Net metering works very simply. Whenever the solar power system puts out more energy than the home uses, the consumers get credit for this on the utility bill. Sometimes this won’t amount to cash rebates, but credits will be used towards current or future electric bills. Sometimes, though, there may be a catch-up check at year’s end if you’ve produced more than you ever used.
Another important thing for users on the grid to monitor is Time Of Use (TOU) net metering. This is accomplished by putting in special meters that measure time of power usage from a grid. Since the power off the grid costs more during peak hours and seasons, the meter keeps track of the usage during no peak and peak hours.
When you know the peak times, you can use the advantages of solar power to save you money during these times. Whatever can’t be done by solar power during the peak times can be completed during the off-peak hours. For instance, water can be cooled for air conditioning in advance.
Most people feel that battery storage is critical for their systems because they don’t want to go without power in case of an outage. This is very true in states that have a lot of blackouts. This is the main reason why people insist on having a battery backup system.
Banning of the use of solar power systems with battery backup on some grids has been discussed. Thus far net metering has won out, with or without the use of batteries.
Anyone can have the advantages of solar power along with the piece of mind of traditional electric by going on the grid. While some people feel that solar power itself can only grow if people go to a totally solar system, I think that converting to mostly solar is a big step in the right direction.